Friday, July 2, 2010

Bird in Hand

Bird in Hand, by Christina Baker Kline.

Alison had been living for other people for so long that she culd barely identify what she wanted for herself anymore. She'd find herself paralyzed with indecision in the strangest places - the grocery store, for instance, where she roamed the aisles with a rising panic, even as she clutched a list in her hand: What would her kids eat? What would her husband want? She rarely asked herself what she wanted. It seems irrelevant.

Alison and Charlie have two children together and live a happy live in the New York suburbs - so she thinks. Ben and Claire, Alison's best friend, are married without children, but just as happy. What Alison and Ben don't know, however, is that Charlie and Claire have been having an affair for a few months; however, when Alison gets in a car accident which kills a child, Charlie has to "be there" for her, and the cracks in the facade that is their relationship begin to show more and more.

I thought this novel was interesting because it didn't have the normal "happy ending" that one expects nowadays. The Boston Globe said "She's the real deal. Kline dramatizes private life ... with a generous, knowing appreciation of human nature," and I'd have to agree. Alison and Claire have been best friends for 30+ years, and Charlie and Claire have loved each other for the entire time he's been married to Alison (Claire, in fact, introduced him to Alison), and it is only now, at the worst possible time, that they are acting on it.

3.5 out of 5 stars.


  1. I very much liked this book also. Here's a link to my another review -


  2. I like your review as well. Thanks for posting.



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